Sturgill Simpson has never been one to make it easy on us to plot his next move. On the contrary, he appears to love keeping folks on their toes, and communicating to the masses in sometimes cryptic messages and imagery. Such was the case Tuesday afternoon (3-1) when the Kentucky singer and songwriter posted an image of red and while skeletons sparring on his social network properties, including using the image as his new avatar. Is the white skeleton charging the red one a symbol of good defeating evil? Why is the devil skeleton missing its lower jawbone? Is the background black, or more of a dark matte gray? And somewhere Sturgill and his pit crew are laughing at all of our asses for wondering.
We can surmise from the perfectly square aspect of said image that there’s a good chance it’s an album cover, but there’s no confirmation of such. After all, that’s what musicians do, they release albums and stuff, and generally want to get the pot nice and stirred before they do so. The timing would just about coincide with the intelligence Saving Country Music stumbled upon in January that Sturgill is likely to release a new album in June or so, or at least sometime this summer to coincide with performances in Europe and other places. Generally speaking, about two or three months out is a good time to start dropping hints and getting folks talking about your next project.
Sturgill told GQ in January, “What’s next is already finished. I don’t want to put it out just yet, because I know I’m just going to have to turn around and do what I just did all over again. Quite honestly, I need about six months at home with my family. And hopefully, instead of being out on the road, I’ll be doing what’s-next-what’s-next, you know? For me it’s all about being in the moment and having freedom.”
Six months from then would roughly be June. Also the Roskilde Festival in Denmark, where Sturgill is scheduled to perform in late June, early July says Sturgill’s new album “will land in the summer of 2016.”
But who knows, maybe it’s new tour artwork, or just a groovy new t-shirt design. We’ll just have to see.
Meanwhile Sturgill Simpson fans have already been delivered some new music. His song “Sugar Daddy” was selected as the theme song for HBO’s new series Vinyl. No official word on if “Sugar Daddy” will be a part of Sturgill’s new album or not.